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Gravettian projectile points: Considerations about the evolution of osseous hunting weapons in France

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Abstract

The transition from the Aurignacian to the Gravettian witnessed important environmental, economic and social changes. These changes are especially evident in hunting weapons. Some Aurignacian points (split-based points) disappear from the archaeological record, others (simple-based points) remain, and new types (bevelled based points) appear, some of which will persist long after the Gravettian. Others become characteristic of the Gravettian, with some specific to certain phases (‘Isturitz points’, simple-based points with mesial incisions). In contrast with the Aurignacian, Gravettian projectile points become more and more refined and standardized. These changes are closely related to the introduction of a new method of blank extraction: the ‘debitage by extraction with the groove and splinter technique’ (DE with GST). Owing to the diversity of sedimentary, environmental, and cultural contexts in which Gravettian techno-complexes are found, this chapter will focus on osseous points discovered in France. The economic, environmental, and sociological factors involved in the transformation of this equipment during the Gravettian is outlined and discussed.

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Goutas, N. (2016). Gravettian projectile points: Considerations about the evolution of osseous hunting weapons in France. In Vertebrate Paleobiology and Paleoanthropology (pp. 89–107). Springer. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-0899-7_7

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